I’m not going to quit until I absolutely have to.
The prolific writer and public intellectual Christopher Hitchens made his first public appearance in months, as he’s been battling esophageal cancer, at the Texas Freethought Convention. Richard Dawkins awarded him with the Freethinker of the Year Award. Hitchens spoke and answered questions for about an hour with an emotional and humbled audience. The Houston Chronicle has a nice account of the evening. One of the questions came from eight-year-old Mason Crumpacker who asked what books she should read. Hitchens asked to see her after the talk, and he did indeed spend the final moments of the evening with her family as a crowd gathered, writing down a list of books for Mason.
Update: Mason’s wonderful thank you note:
Dear Mr. Hitchens,
Thank you for your kindness to me and all of the wonderful books you recommended to help me think for myself. Thank you also for taking my question very seriously. When I was talking to you I felt important because you treated me like a grown up. I feel very fortunate to have met you. I think more children should read books. I also think that all adults should be honest to children like you to me. For the rest of my life I will remember and cherish our meeting and will try to continue to ask questions.
P.S. I would like to start with “The Myths” by Robert Graves.